Whether you are exploring this amazing island in the dead of winter as a throwback to the summer that left too soon or as an actual summer vacation to embrace the heat and sunshine that the season brings, Turks & Caicos will not disappoint! If this is your first time in the tropical British territory – or even if you travel here every year (because, really, why wouldn’t you!) – we have a fulfilling 5 day itinerary all drawn up for you, complete with our very own Daily Mom Turks Tips and chock full of original photos taken by editor Dani, all guaranteed to provide you with an island experience that is both active, view-worthy, and relaxing.
After landing at the Providenciales airport and walking down the airstairs from the plane, you’re greeted with a welcome blast of palmy, warm air. Gather up your bags and your crew and hail a taxi or airport transfer to your home away from home for the next few days, Ocean Club Resorts. During the 20 minute ride from the airport to the resort, you’ll get used to driving on the “wrong” side of the road, enjoy the island’s soca tunes on the radio, and take in the sights around you. Once you arrive at Ocean Club Resorts, get checked into your condo, slip on a bathing suit, and hit the beach for the rest of the day, using this time to decompress from traveling.
After exploring the resort or wasting the day away in a hammock, grab a quick shower and dress up a bit, as you’ll be dining at Ocean Club West’s one and only restaurant, Solana. Sit outside on the deck, with the ocean waves as background music and twinkling lights strung overhead, sipping on a Raspberry Mojito as your kids rehash the day’s events, from whose sandcastle was the biggest to the epic water gun fight under the pool’s bridge. Order a Creamy Conch Chowder for an appetizer – and to set the stage for all the conch eating you’ll be enjoying during your stay – and a delicious platter of sushi for your main course. Sit back, enjoy the good eats and good company, and then hit the hay to be well rested for your first official day in paradise.
As the sun peeks through your curtains, and you rise to greet the beautiful day ahead of you, head back down to Solana or Cabana Beach Bar & Grill for a beachside breakfast, right at your resort. Prepare the group for a few outings today, to take in both the culture and goodness of the island.
You’ll grab a shuttle and take a ride to Caicos Conch Farm first, for an educational and unique tour of the world’s first and only commercial conch farm. You’ll be schooled on all things conch, from their lifecycle and history to actually getting to see and touch them in each stage of their life, in shallow pools of water where they are taken care of to maturity and then eventually sold. This experience will give you a new appreciation of the famous seashell – and delicious seafood – that is loved by all.
EXPLORE AND CONNECT
Your next stop is Potcake Place, which to many just sounds like a cool restaurant, but it’s anything but! Potcake Place is actually a dog rescue charity based in Providenciales, run solely by volunteers. They rescue Potcakes, a breed of dog found in the Bahamas and Turks & Caicos, named after locals feeding these strays the caked remains of cooking pots. You can read more about this unique breed of dog on their website. This dog rescue looks like any old rescue inside, but as a tourist, you’re able to take a dog from the rescue and “adopt” them for the day or just take them on a nice walk around the island, giving them some much needed love and attention, and making your heart just as full. Then, if you can’t seem to part with him or her, simply take the puppy home! Potcakes have been adopted by families all over the world, so this could just be the vacation where you come home with the best, most long lasting souvenir ever!
After drying your tears from leaving the pups and working up an appetite from playing with them all morning, head over to da Conch Shack, an amazing local spot that is beachfront, offers live music, with an incredible Rum Bar, and serves the freshest, local seafood – with a partiality to conch of course – on the island. Enjoy the beautiful ocean views while sinking your toes in the sand, all while drinking a Bambarra 8 Year Reserve rum and snacking on Cracked Conch.
Make your way back to Ocean Club Resorts for some relaxing time after a busy and fulfilling morning. Grab a massage at the on-site Spa Tropique, or if the room is booked on the resort, simply walk across the street to the full service spa location. Even better, have them come to you! They offer spa packages and wedding packages, and all kinds of treatments, such as waxing, pedicures and manicures, facials, body treatments, and more. You can’t vacation on a tropical island and not get pampered at least once. Take this afternoon for you!
EXPLORE AND CONNECT
Once you wake up from your massage-coma and are jolted back to life by the sunshine and heat, spend the rest of the day just lounging about the resort with your people. When it’s time for dinner, head to Ocean Club’s Cabana Beach Bar & Grill and grab a cocktail at the brightly colored bar, before taking a seat on the outdoor patio overlooking the setting sun. Better yet, let them set you and your group up with a beach dinner, complete with a beautifully decorated table, tiki torches, and platters of lobster. And enjoy the best sunset you’ve ever seen from the comfort of your dining table.
Grab a quick breakfast at your restaurant of choice, because today’s another busy one. Take a ride over to Provo Ponies to take an even better ride, on the back of an island horse! Whether you’ve never touched a horse before in your life, or ride regularly, this is an experience of a lifetime. After getting acquainted with the horse chosen especially for you based on skill level and body type, it’s time to pony up and explore the beach in a unique way. Lead your horse down to the beach and belly deep in the crystal clear Caribbean waters, refreshing to you both, and savor the sunshine, the nature, and the magnificent beauty of the amazing creature under you.
After getting over the thrill of horseback riding in the most beautiful place on earth, it’s time to take another classic island ride, on a boat. The Atabeyra is a private charter boat that provides excursions for tourists, including sailing and snorkeling, with an option for picnicking lunch and traveling until sunset – which we really recommend, as a Turks & Caicos sunset is a sight to behold. Climb aboard and let the experienced and friendly crew take you on a tour of the island, including a few stops along the way to private, empty beaches that are perfect for exploring and relaxing.
As the sun falls away, and your stomach starts to rumble, it’s time to make tonight a feast. Dress to the nines and head over to Opus Wine Bar & Grill, right at Ocean Club Resorts. This dinner-only restaurant serves the finest in local Caribbean seafood, along with live music and a beautifully tree lit outdoor courtyard, for dining under the stars. As you sip on your Pinot Noir and nibble on Crispy Filo Shrimp Tempura, reflect on the day’s events and savor this time with your friends and family.
Today is a big one! You’ll be leaving Providenciales and exploring the other islands of Turks & Caicos, via a Heart of the Islands all-day excursion from Big Blue Unlimited. This tour takes you by boat and van and boat again through the North and Middle Caicos islands, opening your eyes to history, animal life, local bat caves and eateries, and the most impressive coastline on the entire island. Your knowledgeable guide will answer all your questions, and you’ll end the day with a renewed respect and appreciation for this exquisite country.
EXPLORE AND CONNECT
It’s your last day on the island, and sometime today you’ll be packing up and heading back to reality. Make today a no-plan one. Simply sit by the pool, lay on the beach, read a book with a cocktail in hand, and savor the last few moments of paradise. Reminisce with your family and friends about their favorite memories and events from the last few days, and make a pact that Turks & Caicos will be on your return-to travel list in the near future.
Photo Credits: Dani Nicole Photography